Thursday, October 30, 2014

Vet Removes a Dog’s Eye without Owner’s Permission

Pugs—which are expected to live for around 13 years—are very susceptible to eye conditions and disorders. With that said, when 12-year-old pug Chloe was burdened with an eye condition, it came as little surprise to the owner, Kimberly Hayden of St. Petersburg, Florida.

As any respectable dog owner would do, Hayden took her beloved dog to the local vet when she noticed a cloudy eye. What was her choice of veterinary hospital? It was the PetSmart-partner known as Banfield.

“We were sent home with three different eye drops […] two oral medications” explained Hayden.

Banfield was expecting a follow-up with Chloe in a few days, so Monday morning Hayden dropped her off before work.

She received a phone call at noon approximately 4 hours after the drop-off from a lady at PetSmart.

“Chloe is doing well. She’s recovering well from surgery.”

Hayden was in shock. Her dog’s cheap follow-up became an expensive, unauthorized surgery. Hayden had even signed paperwork that ensured anything costing more than $5 would be brought to her attention beforehand. This was not the case.

The Initial Reaction

When Hayden was re-introduced with Chloe, she broke down in tears.

“She immediately recognized my voice and came right to me. Jumped up, wanted to be in my lap, and curled up into a ball.”

It was shocking to Hayden for her dog to have undergone such extensive surgery without her permission, and understandably so.

She’s been working closely with Chloe and trying to help her adapt, saying “She’s stumbling, bumping into things. It’s just been very traumatic. It feels surreal,”

Banfield’s Response

The manager at the St. Petersburg Banfield Hospital where this event took place personally stepped up and admitted that a terrible mistake had been made.

Further up the management line was Ari Zabell, the client advocate for Banfield Pet Hospital with the following statement:

"At Banfield Pet Hospital, we are committed to partnering with clients in all decisions regarding their pet's care. In the instance of Chloe, although the care provided was medically necessary based on the severity of her condition and lack of response to therapy, we did fail to get surgical authorization from the client on the day of the procedure. However, we had previously discussed the need for surgery with the client-we also communicated that surgery was critical to alleviate Chloe's pain and potential for infection. We apologize for the lack of clear communication and will continue to attempt to reach Ms. Hayden in an effort to further resolve her concerns. In the meantime, we wish Chloe a speedy recovery."

Possible Legal Actions?

Owner Kimberly Hayden has stated that any legal actions that she chooses to take are purely sympathetic.

Her main focus seems to be the prevention of future veterinary malpractices in similar situations

She whole-heartedly explained that “If I can do anything with what happened to us yesterday to help others, then unfortunately this was a bad thing but we did good from it,”

Hayden has plenty of wiggle room for pitching a successful case, but only time will tell us exactly how much compensation she is seeking for the case.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 451-6900

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Successful Businessman Found Guilty for the Second Time

John B. Goodman founded the International Polo Club Palm Beach. It was a joint task force between Summerfield Johnston, Jr., Mickey Tarnapol, and Goodman himself—header of the project. It has grown to become one of the largest polo clubs of all time and is home to many natural playing fields which were once the lush green fields of Wellington, Florida.

Goodman became very wealthy from his inherited ownership of Goodman Global Holding, Inc., which—at the time—was not only the largest privately held air conditioning and heating equipment manufacturer in the United States, but was also worth an astounding $1.43 billion dollars when he sold it to Apollo Management. It wasn’t until the horrible accident on February 12th, 2010 that John B. Goodman’s name became common knowledge.

A Convicted Criminal

Goodman was cruising near the grounds of his polo club in a Bentley when he failed to obey a stop-sign. He collided with the car of Scott Patrick Wilson, 23, which was then propelled and overturned into the body of water where Wilson drowned.

Perhaps the worst choice Goodman could have made was leaving the scene. He failed to stop and call emergency services until an hour later. This failure to act resulted in hit-and-run charges; had he stayed at the scene of the accident, he may have been able to pull Wilson out of the wreckage before he drowned to death (in a perfect situation).

Roy Black—the criminal defense attorney hired by Goodman—suggested Goodman claim a vehicular malfunction to be the cause of the crash. This attempt proved to be a waste of time. His BAC (Blood-Alcohol Content) was more than twice the legal limit when examined 3 hours after the crash; Goodman claimed he was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time of the crash.

Black defended Goodman vigorously stating that Goodman became intoxicated after the crash by drinking to ease the pain of his newly obtained broken wrist. He says the trauma from the crash caused Goodman a mild traumatic brain injury which resulted in disorientation and confusion which lead to his failure to alert authorities. His cell phone allegedly dead at the time as well—Goodman had to walk to the closest place he could to find a phone.

A Second Hearing

Being found guilty of DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide in March, 2012, Goodman was sentenced to 16 years in prison and $10,000 in fines just 2 months later. This hearing, however, was claimed to be faulty.

The original jury in 2012 included a 70-year-old man by the name of Dennis DeMartin. DeMartin was later found guilty of lying in court and violating court orders and in turn entitled Goodman to another, proper trial. It’s clear now, however, that regardless of DeMartin’s misconduct, Goodman is going to remain a guilty man.

His retrial—which lasted 15 days—concluded that, as determined by the original jury, he was in fact guilty as charged. Statements were just not lining up; criminally negligent acts were being declared by the jury (like speeding). He was found guilty once again of DUI Mansalughter and Vehicular Homicide on Tuesday, October 28th, 2014 and will likely be sentenced in late December, 2014 or early January, 2015.

For more updates on current legal news, rights, information, and for legal assistance, contact Dolman Law Group today or visit our website at

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 451-6900

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Animals in the Roads Injure Thousands of People each Year

The consensus among most experts is that one should not swerve when confronted with a last-second animal in the road.  Swerving out of the way when confronted with a surprise animal in the road puts your family and others in solemn peril. Countless folks across the country each year are incapacitated or killed due to turning abruptly with the intentions of not striking an animal.

·         In February 2014, Port Richey resident, Joseph Barile, swerved so he would not hit a deer. After missing the deer, Joseph struck a tree and died.   
·         In 2013, Largo resident, Keith Mastronardo,  swerved his motorcycle to avoid an animal in the road. 
·         Keith consequently lost control of his motorcycle and was struck by another vehicle.  Keith subsequently passed away.  A police officer recently rolled their vehicle after swerving to miss an animal in the road.  Luckily, the police officer was not seriously injured. 

Unfortunately, the events involving the three individuals mentioned above are relatively common throughout the country.  According to a report by Jon Beckman of the Wildlife Conservation Society, millions of animals are struck in the road each year.  This means that there is a decent chance that you will be confronted with a animal in the road at least once in your life, if not several times. 

According to the Defenders of Wildlife conservation organization:

·         Over 200 people die each year in wildlife-vehicle accidents. 
·         Wildlife causes 29,000 injuries yearly. 
·         Deer-vehicle accidents occur most frequently October to December. 
·         Roadways animals causing human fatalities rose 67% from 1994 to 2006. 

What should you do to increase your safety due to animals in the road? Well, the first thing anyone can always do is obey the law and speed limits.  The faster you drive, the less time there is to assess the surroundings.  Next, make sure that you are cautious when approaching areas of the road with heavy tree coverage.  Most animals are pretty good at hiding from people and you will not likely see them hiding until it is too late.  Additionally, do not throw food scraps and rubbish out of your window.  This material will entice animals to the road like a magnet causing a treacherous condition. 

If you are confronted with an animal in the path and you have time to stop, you should let off the gas and lightly tap on the brakes.  Do not slam on the breaks unless your are sure that no one is behind you.  If you do not have time to safely reduce your speed, do not swerve your vehicle.  You significantly increase the risk of catastrophic injury if you swerve.

If you do end up making contact with the animal, you should pull over at a safe area.  Do not pull over on the shoulder of a heavily trafficked highway if you have that option.  If there is any chance that you are injured, you must call 911 immediately.  Sometimes you do not realize you have been injured until it is too late.  It is prudent to blunder on the side of care. 

If you are not seriously injured, find a safe place where you can pull over to call the authorities. Make sure the suitable agency is contacted so that the animal is removed from the area.  You should also schedule an appointment with your doctor to make you did not injure yourself.  Many injuries go undetected until hours after the accident.  Whiplash can cause chronic pain, and the symptoms can go unnoticed immediately after the accident. 

Finally, you should contact a licensed Florida attorney whenever you are in car wreck.  Following a car accident, you will have to face the insurance companies and any medical bills that follow.   The insurance companies and the bill collectors do not care if you get a fair arrangement. That is why you need a seasoned attorney who will fight zealously for you.  The team over at Dolman Law Group battles daily for their clients so that they do not get a raw deal.  No outworks Dolman Law Group. 

800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765
(727) 451-6900


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Ebola Medical Malpractice Sparks Potential Lawsuit

Thomas Eric Duncan was the first patient in the United States to be diagnosed with Ebola. He was born in Liberia and lived there for most of his life, where a large portion of his family still resides. It wasn’t until September 19th that he made the surprising decision to move to the United States to pursue a better life. No one, however, expected it to end so soon after his departure.

In Liberia, Duncan worked for an offspring company of FedEx known as Safeway Cargo. He personally transported the general manager of the company, Henry Brunson, who explains that Duncan unexpectedly quit his job without reason. It was later discovered that—after a phone call with his sister (who lives in the U.S.)—he obtained a visa and planned to arrive at Dallas, Texas on September 20th, 2014 to meet his now 19-year-old son and Louise Troh, his fiancée, who fled Liberia with their son 16 years ago to escape the African civil war.

The Initial Contraction

On September 15th, 2014, Thomas Eric Duncan—better known as Eric—was in Monrovia, Liberia where he used to reside. He rented living space from the Williams family and shared the home with them. It was shocking for the family when chaos suddenly ensued; the pregnant Nathaline Williams began experiencing unbearable pain and needed immediate medical attention. With the disease spreading rapidly in Liberia, emergency transportation and even hospital beds were scarcely available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

The troubling family was experiencing incredible difficulty in receiving fetching an ambulance, so Eric took it upon himself to step up and secure a taxi ride for the group. They traveled very closely in the back of the taxi; it was never discovered exactly how much physical contact Eric had with Nathaline that day, but the family was faced with a tragedy when Nathaline later died from Ebola.

How Did He Not Know?

4 days later, when boarding his connecting flight from Brussels, Belgium to Dallas at the Monrovia airport, Eric—as were all other passengers—was asked to fill out a health examination questionnaire. Because Nathaline was many months into her pregnancy, Eric had admitted that he assumed she was having a painful miscarriage.  Assuming he truly believed Nathaline had a miscarriage, and combined with the fact that he was showing no symptoms; Eric answered “no” when asked if he has had any contact with the Ebola virus in the past 21 days.

It was only when he began showing symptoms on September 24th, 2014 that he decided to take any medical action. He went to the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital emergency room the next night seeking an answer and treatment. The medical physicians at the hospital—whose guards were likely lowered with little given thought to the Ebola virus—sent Eric home with antibiotics and scheduled instructions.

The daughter of his newly reunited fiancée, Youngor Jallah, insisted that Eric go back to the hospital. Three days after his initial hospital visit, Youngor took it upon herself to call 911 and have Eric taken in. She stated that his blood pressure was “frighteningly low, and his temperature measured close to 103.” Also, according to her brief examination, “his eyes had turned red”, he was vomiting, and “he had been to the bathroom seven times during the night.”

The Spread; the Surprise; and the News

After an astounding 3 hours stay in the waiting room, nurses finally gave medical attention to Eric. They were reportedly wearing partial hazmat suits and were therefore more susceptible to the contraction of Ebola. It’s clear to see how unprepared the U.S. was for Ebola; although it the virus was running rampant in Liberia and many other Africa countries, a direct threat to the United States was never expected.

The only reason even partial hazmat suits were worn was because Youngor had warned medical professionals about Eric’s history in Liberia and expressed that genuine care and safety should be practiced.  Eric went from critical to stable, stable to questionable, questionable to critical again, and then sadly lost the battle with Ebola on October 8th, 2014.

Just 2 days after Eric’s death, a 26-year-old nurse by the name of Nina Pham who aided in the treatment of Eric (Duncan) reported to have a fever. The next day, on October 11th, 2014, she was confirmed to have contracted Ebola and became the first person to contract the virus in the United States. News of this contraction spread like wildfire on mainstream media news and quickly made Ebola a hot topic for conversation.

Amber Vinson—another nurse who treated Eric—had plans to travel on October 13th, 2014 via Frontier Airlines Flight 1143 from Cleveland back to Dallas; there were132 other passengers on that flight. Vinson made an incredibly wise choice and made a phone call to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to report a temperature of 99.5 degrees. She was concerned for the safety of the other passengers and wanted to clarify that it would be okay to fly.

A health official at the CDC gave her the green light and Vinson boarded the flight. With so many people on board that flight, it took everyone involved by surprise when the next day, Amber Vinson was reporting a high fever. According to Wikipedia, Vinson was isolated within 90 minutes of reporting the fever and was tested positive for the virus the next day.

With 2 nurses having contracted the virus from Eric, viewers of mainstream media news couldn’t help but panic. Not everyone was sure on exactly how big of a problem the virus was becoming. In the news, the overwhelming stories and scare tactics employed led citizens to believe it was a lot worse than it actually was.

Legal Action

30-year-old Briana Aguirre was the nurse that treated Nina Pham at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital. Based on the so-far seemingly predictable pattern, you’d imagine that Aguirre also contracted Ebola, but she did not. She made a bold move and decided to take time off of work to seek help from a lawyer. She met Robert W. Kelley of the Kelley/Uustal firm in Fort Lauderdale and explained the unsafe practices and protection the Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital was supplying their staff.

They were soon interviewed together by an interested Matt Lauer from the “Today Show” on NBC who asked questions about the hazmat suits and other precautions these nurses take to remain healthy. Aguirre explained that there was a “3-inch gap below the chin” and it could pose a threat if contaminated fluid got into the nose or mouth. Kelley’s firm strongly focuses on medical malpractice suits, and with Aguirre being a whistleblower, she needed a firm who could strongly defend her case.

Aguirre doesn’t necessarily plan to take any direct legal action against the hospital, she just wants to learn her rights and protect her health and best interests. Aguirre told Lauer that she greatly enjoys working for the hospital, but “threw a fit” when she witnessed how poorly trained and prepared staff were for Ebola. Aguirre’s main goal is to let United States citizens know that hospitals need to change for the better; they need an upgrade and she urges everyone to step up and fight for safer, more prepared, and more advanced health care. She explained that “This is one of the biggest facilities in this city. Yet, doctors were walking from room to room and potentially cross-contamination.” 

Will Aguirre’s battle for safer health care cost her job at the hospital she loved? Will she land herself in court for disorderly conduct? Will she be forced to pursue the hospital and charge them with medical malpractice? With her lawyer Kelley by her side, she plans to speak her mind freely and with protection. Only time can tell if she can make a difference. For more articles on legal rights, stories, and more, visit

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756

Contact us with our
Online Form 

Practice Area: 
Medical Malpractice

Monday, October 20, 2014

Traumatic Brain Injuries in Florida

In the United States—according to one of the most recent studies—about 1.4 million Americans suffer a TBI, or Traumatic Brain Injury, per year. These can range anywhere from short term concussions to long term brain defects that severely disable the patient. Of those 1.4 million TBIs, approximately 50,000 of them result in death and 235,000 results in lengthy hospitalizations. The rest—1.1 million—are treated and released after a short period. In total, there’s about 5.3 million Americans living with a TBI today in the United States; meaning that 2% of the U.S. population is currently living with a long term disability.

In Florida, those numbers are scaled down to reflect a smaller population. Around 370,000 Florida residents are currently living with a long term disability as the result of a TBI and that number is expected to increase to approximately 435,000 by 2015. In 2005 alone, 93,000 TBIs occurred in Florida, 3,900 of which resulted in deaths.  Florida, however, has grown to be one of the most notable states for the treatment of traumatic brain injuries. (More on traumatic brain injuries in Florida)

The ‘invisible disability’—called such because of the often difficult or delayed diagnosis—has become a more common problem in today’s society in conjunction with the increased use of motor vehicles, participation in recreational and/or professional sports, and other activities which may or may not have become more dangerous over the years. There are understandable reasons for your TBI to go unnoticed right away such as:

  • ·        Symptoms—both mental and physical—take time to develop.
  • ·        Doctors choose to conduct only partial tests on patients because no head trauma is visible.
  • ·        Symptoms that were shown are blamed on something other than a traumatic brain injury.
  • ·        Drugs which are prescribed to deal with another injury may counter the negative cognitive effects as a result of the TBI.

Florida Fights TBIs

Life can become incredibly difficult for a patient who has received a TBI—sometimes even impossible for them to live on their own. Mandated by the Florida Legislature, the Florida Department of Health, Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Program, or BSCIP, is called upon to assist, treat, and re-develop patients with moderate-to-severe traumatic brain injuries. They are financially supported through a trust fund which receives a portion of money from many vehicle, motorcycle, and licensing fines, penalties, or fees. The main purpose that the BSCIP serves is the rehabilitation of patients. A patient who has suffered a severe TBI must be properly re-introduced to the community and requires assistance in doing so. The BSCIP helps in providing the tools and modifications needed for the continuance of easy living.

‘Easy Living’

Those who are blessed with working legs and a healthy, functioning brain have many choices of travel. A patient who has suffered from a moderate-to-severe TBI may lose his or her ability to walk. It’s the Florida BSCIP that can, for example, provide an electric stair lift that the person would use to travel up and down stairs with little to no effort. Another example is a transportation vehicle with a wheelchair loader inside which can lift the person—while still in the wheelchair—up and into the vehicle safely. It’s easy to forget how important our legs are, and it’s touching to see a group so dedicated to helping others make the transition into a new life a smooth one.

One unfortunate event that could happen to a patient—or the family of a patient—who receives a life-changing TBI in an accident, however, is the exact opposite. ‘Hard living’ is sure to ensue if the patient’s insurance provider treats the situation similar to the providers we at Dolman Law have dealt with did in the past. They can belittle the situation; they’ll insist that the injury is not as severe as people are making it seem; they’ll declare a lesser payment and demand the final say.

Dolman Law Group


At the Clearwater based Dolman Law Group, we strive to achieve the maximum protection for our clients. If you or a loved one has been hospitalized or is currently living with a traumatic brain injury and has had trouble receiving the insurance coverage that is or was owed towards treatment in the situation, you may be eligible for compensation. It’s hard enough dealing with the TBI itself, even as a family member of the sufferer, so when medical payments start getting denied it can introduce an overload of stress. Don’t settle for less; get exactly what you’re covered for—no questions asked. Contact Dolman Law Group today for a free case evaluation and consultation and we’ll let you know your rights, options and more.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 451-6900

Contact us with our
Online Form 

Practice Area: 
Brain Injury

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Dangers of Intersections and the Modern Car

Intersections are often a place for some folks to check their text messages, take a sip of coffee, or gaze at their hair in the mirror as they idle towards the light or stop sign.  Unfortunately, intersections should not be seen as places for a “break” from driving.  This is due to the fact that intersections are the most dangerous portion of a roadway.  Intersections are dangerous for a number of reasons, but one of the main factors is due to congestion.  With more cars in your immediate area, you are more likely to get in a wreck.  Another reason intersections are so dangerous is because we are carelessly relaxed and distracted behind the wheel.  The distracted driver approaching an intersection can often lead to a significant increase in the likelihood of a collision. 

Does your Comfy Car make you too Relaxed Behind the Wheel?
A comfortable car is exceptional; we all want that, but are we too comfortable?  Some modern vehicles have perfectly cushioned lumbar support seats, heated seats, high-end speakers, GPS, cellphones, climate control, and suspensions where you barely feel a bump on the road.  And of course, who can have a car trip without their favorite cold soda and a snack in the middle console? Driving a car can feel almost like you are driving around your favorite couch from home.  The creature comforts in late model vehicles are great, but does this coziness lull us into a false sense of relaxation?  According to the NHTSA, driving in a state of drowsiness causes 100,000 collisions a year, resulting in 40,000 injuries and 1,550 deaths. Furthermore, in 2012, drivers who were overly relaxed behind the wheel caused 3,328 fatalities. 

It is important to remember that you are driving a huge, powerful chunk of metal that causes serious injuries and deaths each year.  Comfort is fine, but that does not mean it is time to completely let your guard down.  One must maintain a level of attentiveness to protect yourself and those around you.  Just a couple of nanoseconds of not paying attention could cause catastrophic destruction, especially since our vehicles are getting bigger and faster every year.  Over the past thirty years, the average vehicle horsepower has increased by eighty percent.  Furthermore, an ordinary new vehicle has expanded from 3,221 pounds in 1987 to 4,009 pounds in 2010.  Driving such gigantic and powerful machinery carries great weight. 

What are the Facts on Accidents Occurring at Intersections?
According to a report conducted by the National Highway and Traffic Administration, 2,307,000 crashes occur at intersections each year. Of those accidents, 7,421 are fatal.   Additionally, older people are more likely victims of an intersection accident.  Individuals over the age of 65 made up nearly 54 percent of all accident at the intersection. Furthermore, women are more likely than men to get in an accident at an intersection. Women are 9 percent more likely the victim of an intersection-related accident than men. 

What about the Minor Fender-Benders that Involve Whiplash?
Fender benders and rear-end accidents are frequent events at intersections. Often times, the accident does not cause enormous damage to the vehicle, but they can cause severe whiplash.  According to the Mayo Clinic, whiplash is a neck injury that occurs when your head swiftly moves backward and then forward. These extreme motions jerk your neck muscles and ligaments outside their regular range of motion. Some people recover from whiplash easily, while others develop chronic pain from their whiplash.

·         tenderness along the back of the neck and shoulders,
·         neck swelling,
·         muscle spasms,  
·         difficulty flexing, extending, or rotating the head,
·         headache,
·         difficulty concentrating,
·         sleep disturbances,
·         fatigue,
·         jaw tightness or difficulty chewing
Frequently, pain and injuries are not apparent to the victim until some time after the incident.  This is why it is imperative that you see your doctor immediately after even the slightest fender bender to see if you are injured or not. Furthermore, it is wise to contact an experienced car crash attorney after an accident as you may be entitled to compensation for damages caused by a negligent individual or corporation.  Whiplash injuries have the potential to leave you with stacks of medical bills. 

The above information is from: Whiplash, EmedicineHealth , (last visited Oct. 7, 2014).

So what Behaviors should I avoid to keep my Family Safe?
Just knowing that intersections are dangerous does not make anyone additionally protected.  You need to know common causes of intersection crashes.  Once you know what behaviors are dangerous, you can alter your conduct accordingly to decrease the risk of harm to you and your family. 

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration conducted a report that showed the following data:

·         44% of intersection-related crashes are due to drivers not paying adequate attention to their surroundings. 
·         22% of accidents at intersection happen when making a left-hand turn.
·         8.4% of intersection-related collisions were produced by a driver’s false of assumption of another’s action.
·         7.6% of accidents were caused by a driver turning with an obstructed view. 

The above information is from the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations report entitled:  Crash Factors in Intersection-Related Crashes: An On-Scene Perspective (September 2010).

According to the facts above, there are several simple things your can do to decrease the likelihood of getting in an accident at an intersection.  First, remind yourself that the intersection is not a place where you can let your guard down.  It is imperative that you pay attention to your surroundings at all times behind the wheel.  Second, do not try to guess what the other driver is going to do next.  You are only in control of your vehicle, and you cannot assume that the other guy is not distracted.  Third, make sure you have nothing blocking your view before you make that turn.  It is just not worth it if you do not know if you have a clear path.  Making a turn without knowing it is safe could lead to injuries and death for many people.  Finally, do not break the law.  The laws are in place for a reason.  Some laws are put into place after a certain act has found to statically increase your risk of injury. Thus, you can decrease your chances of injury by just not breaking the law.  Moreover, others drivers rely on the law of the road too, so if you make an unexpected or illegal maneuver you can bet that other drivers will probably not expect your unlawful move.

Contact Clearwater and Tampa Injuries Lawyers
Getting into a car accident is always frustrating.  The entire staff at Dolman Law Group make it their priority to help victims through these difficult times.  The firm is comprised of 7 Licensed Florida Attorneys which have represented countless victims. Our attorneys are experience in guiding clients through difficulties.  We give clients peace of mind so they can focus on healing from their injuries. 

Should you ever encounter the tragic scenario of an intersection collision know your rights and speak with the award winning attorneys at Dolman Law Group.  Our consultation is always free and we only earn a fee if we make a recovery for you.  Call 727-451-6900 for more information.

800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756
(727) 451-6900

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Amendment 2: Florida Medical Marijuana

The Legalization of Marijuana in Florida

Marijuana, or Cannabis, while generally considered beneficial in the fight against some of the most major medical conditions, is only legal for recreational use in 2 states, Colorado and Washington. It is, however, legal—under specific circumstances—in a surprising 23 states (and DC).  Many states in which marijuana use is illegal are deciding to take steps to partially or completely legalize Cannabis for both medical and recreational use. Florida—being a large, influential, and hot (literally) vacation destination—has been getting a lot of attention lately. On the November 4th, 2014 ballot, voters ranging everywhere from Clearwater to Tallahassee will finally have their chance to legalize medical marijuana.

Facts & Benefits of Marijuana Use

The cannabis plant comes in 3 species: sativa, indica, and ruderalis. Depending on the preparation and harvesting method, cannabis is often used for its seeds and their oils, hemp fiber, and can also serve as both a medical and recreational drug. The main psychoactive constituent of cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol, commonly known as THC. THC is the active ingredient that causes a user to feel “high”.

According to, there is no record of any person ever dying from an overdose of marijuana.

Marijuana is known to be helpful in some of these areas:

·         Reduce symptoms suffered by AIDS patients
·         Decrease nausea and increase appetite to counter effects caused by, for example, chemotherapy
·         Reduce pressure in the eye(s) suffered by glaucoma patients
·         Alleviate neuropathic pain and spasticity in multiple sclerosis patients
·         Reverse the harmful effects of tobacco and improve lung health
·         Can help control epileptic seizures and symptoms of seizures caused by Dravet’s Syndrome
·         Can stop cancer from spreading
·         Can decrease anxiety
·         Slows the progression of Alzheimer’s disease
·         Treats hepatitis C and increases treatment effectiveness

It’s hard to conduct human studies and tests to learn more about the medical effects of marijuana because of state laws and regulations; according to Businessinsider, “only 6% of studies on marijuana analyze its medicinal properties.”

The Legalization Controversy

Uniquely raised, genetically modified, or naturally different strands of marijuana are one of the reasons that makes legalization an issue in the United States. There’s a difference between smoking to feel better and smoking to ‘feeeeel’ better. Getting high is when smoking or ingesting marijuana turns into a recreational activity instead of a medical treatment, or so people say. It’s almost like a side effect that people need to learn to accept. Nyquil makes you drowsy but it gets rid of your cold; marijuana may alter your attitude or behavior but it can cure or ease some serious conditions. What will it be?

There has been approximately $6,200,000 spent on supportive campaigns, and an amazing $3,300,000 spent on opposing campaigns, which is insanely high based when you consider polls which state that most citizens are supportive of the legalization. (

Marijuana is argued to be dangerous for the following reasons:

·         Rapid heart beat
·         Disorientation
·         Lack of physical coordination
·         Depression or sleepiness
·         Panic attacks or anxiety
·         Brain abnormalities
·         Lung damage and conditions such as bronchitis (despite what the benefits listed)
·         Psychosis
·         Birth defects and abnormalities (as a result of the father’s sperm, or the mother smoking while pregnancy).

The proposed negative effects of marijuana seem like the exact opposites when compared with the positive effects, but it’s no surprise that the ones claiming these side effects are huge, wealthy campaigns designed specifically to stop drug use in the world. This raises the question; why do they care so much? Where are they getting the money to fund these campaigns?

It’s a common belief that big pharmaceutical companies like AmerisourceBergen are the ones funding the anti-drug campaigns like because the legalization of marijuana could mean consumers wouldn’t need to rely on big companies to get their monthly medical fix; they’d be able to grow their own. In many states you’re allowed the legal growth of a certain number of plants if you’re eligible for medical marijuana use; in California, for example, you’re allowed a total of 6 mature or 12 immature plants.

Legalization Milestones

Through citizen initiation, voters will be able to vote for the legalization of medical marijuana in the state of Florida on the November 4th ballot. It’s numbered as Amendment 2 and was initially introduced in 2009 by People United for Medical Marijuana, also known as UnitedForCare. If passed, it will legally allow those who have a “debilitating medical condition” the ability to use, possess, produce, and buy or sell marijuana. This amendment will in no way affect the laws that are already in place pertaining to recreational use.

·         In June, 2014, Governor Rick Scott signed 2 senate bills (SB1030 and SB1700) which would make Florida the 22nd state in the nation to legalize the use of marijuana for medical purposes. This only allows the use of very weak strands of marijuana, but it was the first real look at legalization Florida has seen.
·         A poll conducted by Quinnipiac University showed that 88% of Florida voters are in favor of the legalization of medical marijuana.
·         Well-known law firm Morgan and Morgan has heavily pushed to gain attention to voters in the state. The campaign, headed by John Morgan himself, has been a great success.
·         It must win a supermajority vote of 60 percent to pass, and with more than a couple polls resulting in “Yes” counts well over 70%, it’s expected to pass. (

We’ll all know the outcome of this amendment when the day comes, but until then, continue to fight for what you believe in. Marijuana is seen as a miracle to some, and a life destroying addictive drug to others. Many voters see this issue as a vote for personal choice and individual rights. We live in a nation where the majority has the final say, so if you plan on getting the freedom you want and deserve, step up and vote.

(727) 451-6900
Contact with our Online Form